camping & floating trip essentials + a giveaway

this week i am writing about our buffalo river canoeing trip along with some of our tips on gear & food prep. i am excited to share some of our favorite camping essentials with you today! below are a handful of items we take on weekend camping & floating trips that perhaps you haven't added to your packing list just yet:


1. large cooking pot & sturdy cast iron pan.  regardless if we are cooking on the fire or a gas stove, we always bring along a cooking pot & cast iron pan. we fry eggs in our cast iron & boil noodles & steam vegetables in our pot. these two will get your cooking job done with little clean up afterward. we find most of our cast iron pieces secondhand for less than $10 each.


2. dryer lint. we have since replaced newspaper & homemade fire starters for lint from the dryer. we simply keep a basket next to the dryer at home & each time we clean out the lint, we place it in our basket for our next camping adventure. we love reusing something that would otherwise be thrown away. 


3. reusable plates, utensils & cloth napkins. we love our handy set of blue plates we purchased for only a few bucks from a yard sale when we first married. our set is much better than the plastic & styrofoam throw away plates & utensils we too often see when camping. we keep the plates, along with our utensils & cloth napkins, in a storage container in the garage with the rest of our camping gear. when we are preparing to leave for a weekend trip, we simply bring along the camping container with all of our gear packed & ready to go.


4. a quilt. we love bringing along a well-worn quilt for naps by the river, sitting with a good book & relaxing by the fire. it only takes up a bit of space & makes for a more comfortable trip.


5. simple, natural body care products. we always bring along a small container of dr. bronner's castile soap, toothpaste, bug spray & sunscreen. a new favorite body care product i will continue to use even when we are not camping is the deodorant cream by happy homestead botanicals

mandi is such a knowledgeable & gifted friend of mine. when i heard that she was opening up her online shop & selling her deodorant, i had to try it. luke & i have used every kind of natural deodorant with little luck. some needed reapplying after thirty minutes, others left us smelling unfortunately stinky & some creams gave luke a serious rash. the happy homestead deodorant was a very happy success, leaving us smelling like lavender even after several hours of paddling on the river.


mandi is offering a jar of her happy hippy deodorant cream to one natalie creates reader! this cream is perfect for every day living at the office, out with friends, snuggled at home or on a camping trip! 

simply leave a comment sharing your favorite camping essential & email address. 
i will randomly choose a winner & share the news on friday morning! comments close friday morning at 6:00 am central time. happy winning!
love,
natalie

68 comments:

Pheasant said...

Ooh that looks great, I'm forever trying to find new natural deodorant. Almost finished my current one so on the look out!

Erin Smith said...

We, too, use lint! We also like to bring citronella candles, sleeping pads (so comfy!), and old pans.

Rachel Weaver said...

Dryer lint is a great tip! And adding a touch of beauty with a quilt is the way to go.

Lucy said...

Thanks for the dryer lint tip!

My favorite camping essential is a very non-essential bag of marshmallows. I once had a raccoon steal my bag of marshmallows from the picnic table when I popped inside the tent to grab something. That little bugger ate those marshmallows one by one while we stared each other down. I had to run down to the camp store and pay something like $7 for another bag. Ouch.

Anonymous said...

We pack a small, machine washable rug for the entrance of our tent. Not only does it add a homey feel but it also cuts down on the dirt! Diana farmgirl616@hotmail.com

Living on Love said...

Love this post. Great tips. Makes me want to get off the farm and into the wild. I should also tell you that I just adore your blog and your contributions to Tend. Hope all is well at the new place!

xx

Lacy

Mechelle said...

I've never been camping. But, I do keep my thrifted blanket in the car for impromptu lunches/picnics at our local park.

mechelleluster@gmail.com

Brittany said...

I'm a camping novice having only done it twice (both times in March, brrrr!). Silly question: doesn't using deodorant attract bears? That's my biggest fear with camping. I love the idea of using lint to start a fire. We usually compost ours.

Grace Richardson said...

I always take an aluminum mug - it can be used in the morning for coffee, and then at night for...harder drinks by the fire. :)

Ooh, dryer lint as fire starter. I like it!

Anonymous said...

My camping essential is our propane lantern, great for cooking in the dark!
I'd love a post on all your natural beauty product essentials!
-Suzanne

Amanda said...

We also save and use our lint! This deoderant sounds awesome! We have been looking for one that would work and dosen't ast as a antiperperant or have aluminum in it!

Justine Simmons said...

My husband and I are camping this weekend! (Our first time together!!) an essential for me is s'mores ingredients. I love a campfire with people I love and s'mores tops it off. Sometimes we use peanut butter cups instead of chocolate bars for an extra indulgent treat. :)

Justine
Justine.L.Simmons@gmail.com

~lori said...

It's not camping for me unless my kids are there, giggling and smiling - and I like to bring my hoop!

Muliebrity said...

We just returned from a beautiful weekend of camping and canoeing. Cast iron pan, my hoops, and gin and tonic are a must.

Thanks for the giveaway!

Rebecca
muliebritysmith at gmail .com

Ashley Vangraafeiland said...

Haven't been camping yet with my little one. Now that he's 3, HE is my favorite camping essential. Appreciate your list, and I would just add camp friendly soap like Dr. Bronner's. <3 Ashley - mamaderio@gmail.com

Taylor said...

My favorite camping thing is also my dr bronners soap. We use it for almost everything and its simple to take along everywhere we go.

Taylor.Kelch@gmail.com

Courtney said...

Headlamp for sure! For those late night trips to the smelly outhouse. Haha. Love the pics Natalie!

clthomas07@gmail.com

Lindsey Shinkey said...

My favorite camping essential is bug spray. I hate those nasty mosquitos.

Shinkeyfam @ gmail dot com

Daniela said...

I can't camping without a great book :-) it's essential to have relaxed evenings, slow afternoons and happy hours spent reading on the grass!

Johanna said...

We just bought our first cast-iron dutch oven last year, and now I will never camp without it! Best purchase ever. It's made me actually ENJOY camp cooking rather than just "tolerate" it.

Anonymous said...

Bug deterrent is key! And sunscreen, having to find natural alternatives to these is sometimes challenging an $$$.

Thanks for this giveaway!
Fingers crossed!

-Kim

mandy foster said...

Favorite camping essential is my camp chair.

Unknown said...

I just wanted to say thank you for pointing us to her etsy! I make the same deodorant at home so I don't need any, but I love her etsy site! :)

amandabryce said...

Ooooh, honestly? My favorite camping essential is smores, haha! :)

Unknown said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Clanori said...

Lavender is my must have for camping.Good for bug bites and burns and rashes.

Unknown said...

I haven't done much camping, but would love to take a trip this summer! I would bring my homemade bug spray:
3 1/2 ounces witch hazel
1/2 teaspoon lemongrass oil
1/2 teaspoon eucalyptus oil
1/2 teaspoon citronella oil

-Ashley C.

fawn & fern said...

a headlamp is a must! especially when you're camping in a primitive area & have no light other than what you bring. also...a portable fan for when you're camping in the heat of the summer & your tent feels like a sauna in the morning.

Theresa said...

You mentioned most of what I consider essential for camping, but one other thing we always include is a sturdy piece of twine. Doesn't take up room & can be hung between trees to dry towels, blankets, clothes, etc that end up inevitably wet due to morning dew or fun in the water. Thanks!

Pure Heart said...

i would bring my bug bracelet!

Chasity said...

One of our camping essentials is a breathing mobile washer for washing our family of 5's laundry. Plus I have to say Everything tastes better cooked in Dutch Ovens!

Brittany @kitchen::candid said...

I love natural deodorant but sadly it doesn't always keep me feeling fresh. I'd LOVE to try something handcrafted!
As for camping essential, I'd have to say My Husband. He has become a survivalist and "prepper" in his spare time and I know that, together, we could handle any camping trip! ;)

But if I had to choose something else: Sunscreen! We fair maidens cannot tolerate the sun in all her mighty brilliance! :)
candidkitchen@yahoo.com

Lori said...

A good flashlight for late night walks in the woods. Also, a cozy quilt. I have an old one my parents used when I was a kid, and I like that when we take it with us we build on the many memories the quilt already carries. Side note: I follow you on Instagram but this is the first time I've seen your blog and I love it. :)

Shelby said...

Giant shirt to keep the sun and buggies off along with my camera. You and your instagram are wonderful!

HK said...

Oh! Basket for gathering lint is now on the to do list. My essentials are card games and a hammock.
Fingers crossed
Hilary aid at gmail

mandi said...

Thank you friend!

Anonymous said...

I have had zero luck with natural deodorant. I would LOVE to try one that works :)Camping essentials? Wine, camera & makings for s'mores!! :)Thanks for the giveaway!!
Colleen Stewart
lakegeorge13@aol.com

Erin said...

Our favorite things to bring camping are books and hobo pie irons for cooking :)

Ebeby@live.com

hi, i'm kat. said...

a fleece jacket! we live in oregon and the temps always go way down at night.

Sherrie said...

Lemon Eucalyptus essential oil to keep the bugs at bay! I'm enjoying your camping trip tips & pictures! :)

Blakely Hiner said...

That deodorant looks amazing, ironically I favorited it on Etsy just this morning! :)

I've heard of using lint, I guess it really works - we will take it next time! Other camping essentials for me consist of plenty of homemade bug repellant, sleeping bags, and a good deck of cards! Also love to have disposable cameras on hand to capture any and all good times! ;)

Paula said...

I love the quilt ... or maybe I just love the idea of taking a nap! Anyway, my camping essential is my lightweight backpacking husband's nightmare. My body pillow. If you're going to sleep, you might as well make sure you get a really good night's sleep!

amelia said...

I like the lint idea!! I am, apparently, delicious to bugs, so some oregano and lemongrass essential oil always comes along on outings!

marianne nolley said...

I like to vaccum seal gravy or soup and pop it in boiling camp water, no clean up and delicious food! We also take along a bar of soap i have sewn a washcloth pocket for and tie it to the handle of a milkjug for a quick sink setup. If that deodorant works on these pits it will be a miracle for sure, but i am always looking for a natural deodorant that works!! (Im real stinky)

Kathy said...

My headlamp is by far the most practical thing I bring camping... it's fantastic to be able to do things with both hands!

But my favorite camping essentials? Good tea, a sketchbook, and some colored pencils. :)

Thanks for the great giveaway!

jessie b said...

my spork!

i would love the deodorant, but cringe at posting my email address. you can find me at http://painting-on-the-road.blogspot.com/

Kelly Rousseau said...

Ummmm....coffee, right? Oh, and my friend's amazing scavenger hunts, because it keeps the kids occupied for many happy, smiley hours!

Kelly Rousseau said...

Oh yes. papersnip.art@hotmail.com
See comment above.

Robin said...

how great - i'd love to try this! We haven't camped in ages, as dh likes to have a bed/shower {and we have somewhat mentally unstable dogs lol} but... when I was a kid we camped often. We always brought games, and a good book.
Thanks for the giveaway, and good luck everyone!
cokelush at gmail is my email
{former coke lush. icky stuff lol}

Jen said...

Would love to try this deodorant. I swear I have used every.single.deodorant - natural, conventional, and homemade. Nothing works!

We always take along what we refer to as a "pudgie-pie maker." I guess it'd be more widely known as a sandwich griller or something, but we butter two pieces of bread and put fruit filling inbetween and then close it up and grill it over the fire. Awesome.

Stephanie said...

We never leave for a camping trip (mostly backpacking) with our our perk coffee pot. Nothing beats a cool MN morning as a cup of coffee. My headlamp is great to have too as are my awesome stainless sliver ware. :) we camp/hike a lot. We never bring cast iron as its too heavy for our trips but great for short trips or car camping.

That deodorant sounds great. I've been using toms.

Jen said...

Oh, pie iron! That's what most people call it! And my e-mail's tffcprez@yahoo.com

Anonymous said...

oh, please please!! lots of camping planned!

Anonymous said...

Bikinis, cozy sweaters and lots of food! :) I've been trying so hard to find a good long lasting natural deodorant!
Mariapcatanzaro@gmail.com

Chelsea. said...

I have to camping essentials: (1) a travel size chess set, and (2) my Fujifilm instax camera. Having physical pictures you can't delete off your phone brings me back to my childhood camping days, where we look at the pictures now and laugh hysterically at someone's goofy face who didn't know the picture was being taken :)

Kelli said...

I love bringing fresh eggs from our chickens {heart}! There's just something about cooking over a campfire our own, nutritious eggs from our sweet biddies. Makes me think of them while we're gone. :)

Kelli, from sunny Florida

Kelli said...

Oh yeah, my email is we4bates@tampabay.rr.com :)

katie witherow said...

Favorite camping essential woul definitely have to be blankets, and a reminder to not forget to look up at the amazing night sky--wouldn't trade clusters of stars for anything.
(:
kwithj15@gmail.com

Tiara said...

I always bring a book and my camera when I go camping.

Lynn said...

We love camping. I always make sure I have my camera and my star charts (for the night sky).

I have tried several natural deodorants with very little luck. Thanks for the giveaway.

hhenna73 at yahoo dot com

Steffi said...

my favorite camping essential is my norwegian wooden cup (http://ottatre.no/turutstyr/suppekopp-12-cm-d-detail.html), big enough for a meal or a big cup of tea or coffee. i actually never tried (or even have seen) deodorant cream, would love to try it!

steffi.engel@gmx.net

Janis Scobee said...

Coppola Sofia in a can! Love you photos, btw :)

Holly said...

My favorite camping essential is The Clever Bucket from www.CleverHolly.com. It is water tight and collapses flat so it's easy to store. It's perfect for vegetable washing, dish washing, fishing....whatever! I like the lime colored one. You have my email :)

Wendy said...

The beach chair would be a camping essential, along with a good book or knitting project. Perfect way to enjoy the camping for me! Thanks for telling us about happy homestead botanicals. I have added it to my favorites for the future purchase!

Megan Rowell said...

Natalie, your trip looks dreamy! Thanks for sharing those tips. I especially like the thought of bringing an old quilt. I have found it's always wise to bring along a tarp to put under the tent or over stuff if it starts to rain. And pb and j is always a quick meal in case of rain that somehow tastes better in the woods.

Megan Rowell said...

megan.m.rowell@gmail.com

Rose Marry said...

Now a days people love camping. They love to spend free time in outdoor rather then in home.

Kellys Camping

Rose Marry said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
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